Activity in the real estate sector in late 2009 provides some comfort to those who seek signs of economic recovery.
In November, Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom represented China Real Estate Information Corporation (CRIC) in its US$248.4 million initial public offering of American depositary shares on the NASDAQ Global Select Market. The transaction was structured as a carve-out IPO from CRIC’s parent company, E-House China Holdings, a Chinese real estate services company listed on the New York Stock Exchange. In connection with the offering, CRIC also acquired the online real estate business of Sina Corporation, the internet portal also listed on NASDAQ, and Sina acquired a 33.4% ownership stake in CRIC. O’Melveny & Myers represented Credit Suisse Securities and UBS as joint bookrunners, and BofA Merrill Lynch as co-manager.
Meanwhile, Skadden advised property developer Yuzhou Properties on its US$209 million initial public offering and listing on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, and represented the lead underwriters in a US$300 million US Rule 144A/Regulation S offering of 10% senior notes due 2016 by Agile Property Holdings, a PRC property developer whose shares are also listed in Hong Kong. Also in November, O’Melveny & Myers represented underwriters in the US$276 million global offering and listing on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange of Mingfa Group. Mingfa is a property developer in Fujian and Jiangsu provinces.